Civilisation/World Geography - Asia

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Revision as of 16:12, 22 May 2022 by QRNeditor (talk | contribs) (Fixed typographical errors)



The National emblem on the flag of Afghanistan has the inscription of the shahada in Arabic above an image of a mosque

Capital Kabul
Largest cities Kabul, Kandahar, Herat
Currency Afghani
Highest point Noshaq

Alexander the Great is said to have laid out the foundation of what is now Old Kandahar in the 4th century BC

Kabul International Airport was known as Hamid Karzai International Airport from 2014 to 2021

Lashkar Gah, historically also called Bost, is the capital of Helmand Province

Begram ivories are a series of over a thousand decorative inlays, carved from ivory and bone and formerly attached to wooden furniture, excavated in the 1930s in Begram

Wakhan Corridor is the narrow strip of territory in Afghanistan that extends to China and separates Tajikistan from Pakistan

Buddhas of Bamiyan were two 6th century monumental statues of standing buddha carved into the side of a cliff in the Bamyan valley. They were dynamited and destroyed in 2001 by the Taliban

Minaret of Jam is a World Heritage Site

Durand Line refers to the international border established between Pakistan and Afghanistan in 1896. It is named after Mortimer Durand who was the Foreign Secretary of colonial British India at the time



The five white triangles on the flag of Bahrain symbolize the five pillars of Islam

Capital Manama
Largest cities Manama
Currency Dinar
Highest point Mountain of Smoke

Bahrain World Trade Centre is a twin tower complex located in Manama. The towers were built in 2008 by the multi-national architectural firm Atkins. It is the first skyscraper in the world to integrate wind turbines into its design

Bahrain is an archipelago of 33 islands with Bahrain Island the largest land mass

Hawar Islands is an archipelago of desert islands owned by Bahrain. They are situated off the west coast of Qatar


Capital Dhaka
Largest cities Dhaka, Chittagong
Currency Taka
Highest point Saka Haphong

Bangladesh is the world's eighth most populous country, with over 160 million people

Most of Bangladesh is dominated by the fertile Ganges-Brahmaputra delta

Dhaka is the tenth largest city in the world, with a population of more than 18 million people in the Greater Dhaka Area

Jativa Sangsad Bhaban is the National Parliament Building of Bangladesh

Padma is a major river in Bangladesh. It is the main distributary of the Ganges, which originates in the Himalayas

Buriganga River flows past the outskirts of Dhaka

The beach in Cox's Bazar is an unbroken 125 km sandy sea beach with a gentle slope, one of the world's longest



Flag of Bhutan features a dragon holding four jewels in its claws

Capital Thimphu
Largest cities Thimphu
Currency Ngultrum
Highest point Gangkhar Puensum

Bhutan is known as Druk Yul (land of the thunder dragon)

Taktshang is one of the most famous monasteries in Bhutan. Completed in 1692, it hangs on a cliff above the bottom of Paro valley. The name means ‘Tiger's nest’

The highest point in Bhutan is Gangkhar Puensum at 7,570 m, which has the distinction of being the highest unclimbed mountain in the world

Vajrayana Buddhism is the state religion of Bhutan


Capital Bandar Seri Begawan
Largest cities Bandar Seri Begawan
Currency Dollar
Highest point Pagon

Brunei is a sovereign state located on the north coast of the island of Borneo. Apart from its coastline with the South China Sea, it is completely surrounded by the state of Sarawak, Malaysia. It is separated into two parts by the Sarawak district of Limbang

Brunei gained its independence from the United Kingdom in 1984

As a Sharia country, the sale and public consumption of alcohol is banned

Seri Begawan is derived from the Sanskrit for "the aura of the gods"



Flag of Cambodia features a depiction of Angkor Wat

Capital Phnom Penh
Largest cities Phnom Penh, Siem Reap
Currency Riel
Highest point Phnom Aural

The Kingdom of Cambodia is a constitutional monarchy

Angkor Wat (‘city temple’) was built for the king Suryavarman II in the early 12th century as his state temple and capital city. As the best-preserved temple at the site, it is the only one to have remained a significant religious centre since its foundation – first Hindu, dedicated to the god Vishnu, then Buddhist. It is the world's largest religious building. The temple is at the top of the high classical style of Khmer architecture

Angkor Thom (‘great city’) was the last and most enduring capital city of the Khmer empire. It was established in the late twelfth century by king Jayavarman VII

Tonle Sap is unusual for two reasons: its flow changes direction twice a year, and the portion that forms the lake expands and shrinks dramatically with the seasons. From November to May, Cambodia's dry season, the Tonle Sap drains into the Mekong River at Phnom Penh. However, when the year's heavy rains begin in June, the Tonle Sap backs up to form an enormous lake

Koh Tonsay, known as Rabbit Island, is in Cambodia

Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum is a museum in Phnom Penh. The site was used as the notorious Security Prison 21 by the Khmer Rouge regime from its rise to power in 1975 to its fall in 1979

Sihanoukville, also known as Kampong Som, is a coastal city in Cambodia



Flag of China is known as the Five-starred Red Flag

Capital Beijing
Largest cities Shanghai, Beijing, Chongqing, Tianjin, Guangzhou
Currency Renminbi (see note below)
Highest point Mount Everest

Note: The renminbi is the official currency of China where it acts as a medium of exchange, the yuan is the unit of account of the country's economic and financial system

China is the world's second-largest country by land area

China is the world's most populous country, with a population of over 1.4 billion

China borders 14 countries

China’s longest border is with Mongolia

China’s shortest border is with Afghanistan

China has over 160 cities with a population of over one million, including 19 megacities(cities with a population of over 10 million)

China Standard Time follows a single standard time offset of UTC+08:00

China has four municipalities – Shanghai, Beijing, Chongqing, and Tianjin

Most populous administrative divisions (in 2020) – Guangdong (126 million), Shandong (101 million), Henan (99 million)

Forbidden City was the Chinese imperial palace from the Ming Dynasty to the end of the Qing Dynasty. It is located in the middle of Beijing, and now houses the Palace Museum. For almost 500 years, it served as the home of emperors and their households, as well as the ceremonial and political center of Chinese government. Built in 1406 to 1420, the complex consists of 980 buildings and covers 720,000 m2

Summer Palace in Beijing is mainly dominated by Longevity Hill and the Kunming Lake

Temple of Heaven is a complex of religious buildings in Beijing

Tiananmen Square is a large city square in the centre of Beijing, named after the Tiananmen gate (Gate of Heavenly Peace) located to its North, separating it from the Forbidden City

Terminal 3 at Beijing Capital International Airport was designed by Norman Foster

National Centre for the Performing Arts, known as ‘The Giant Egg’, is an arts centre containing an opera house in Beijing

Chaoyang is home to the majority of Beijing's foreign embassies

Shanghai is the largest Chinese city with a population of over 24 million

Shanghai Tower is the third-tallest building in the world, 632 m high. Designed by Gensler

Shanghai Grand Hyatt hotel occupies floors 53 to 87 of the Jin Mao Tower

Shanghai is situated on the banks of the Yangtze River Delta

Shanghai's rapid transit system, Shanghai Metro, incorporates both subway and light railway lines. There are 19 metro lines (including the Shanghai Maglev Train), 396 stations and over 800 km of tracks in operation, making it the longest network in the world

Shanghai is the world’s busiest port in terms of total cargo tonnage

The traditional area of Pudong is now home to the Lujiazui Finance and Trade Zone and the Shanghai Stock Exchange and many of Shanghai's best-known buildings

Huangpu River flows through Shanghai

The Bund is a waterfront area and a protected historical district in central Shanghai

Shanghai has two commercial airports: Shanghai Pudong International Airport and Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport

Thames Town is the English name for a new town in Songjiang District, about 30 kilometres from central Shanghai. The architecture is themed according to classic English market town styles

Guangdong is the most populous province of China, with a population of 126 million

Pearl River Delta in Guangdong province is one of the most densely urbanised regions in the world and one of the main hubs of China's economic growth

Guangzhou is the capital and the sub-provincial city of Guangdong Province in the southern part of China. The city is also known by an older English-language name, Canton. It is a port on the Pearl River

Pearl River Tower is a skyscraper in Guangzhou completed in 2011

Canton Tower in Guangzhou was the tallest tower in the world from 2009 to 2011

Shamian Island is an island in Guangzhou city. It was originally a concession given to European and American traders operating in the Guangzhou area by the Qing Dynasty government in the 19th century

Shenzhen is a major city in the south of Guangdong Province, situated immediately north of Hong Kong. The area became China's first Special Economic Zone

Ping An International Finance Centre is a skyscraper which is under construction in Shenzhen. It is expected to be completed in 2016, and will at that time be the second tallest building in the world and it will be the tallest building in China

Chongqing is a major city in southwest China. The municipality has a population of 32 million although the urbanized area is estimated to have a population of only 9 million

Chengdu is the provincial capital of Sichuan province in Southwest China. It has a breeding centre for giant pandas

New Century Global Centre in Chengdu is the world's largest building in terms of floor area

Tianjin was ceded to nine foreign powers between 1860 and 1947

Harbin, in northeast China, is the tenth most populated city in China

Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival has been held since 1963

Nanjing has been the capital of China for several periods

Wuhan is the capital of Hubei province, and is the most populous city in Central China

Wuhan is located at the confluence of the Yangtze and Han rivers

Hainan Island is known as “China’s Hawaii”

Hainan is the smallest and southernmost province of China

Manchuria is an area of northeast China

Ningbo-Zhoushan is the busiest port in the world in terms of cargo tonnage

The Shaolin Monastery is a Buddhist temple, in Henan province of China. Famous for its long association with Chan (Zen) Buddhism and martial arts, it is perhaps the Chan Buddhist monastery best known to the Western world

Spring Temple Buddha is a statue depicting Vairocana Buddha located in Henan, China. At 128 m, which includes a 20 m lotus throne, it is the tallest statue in the world

Leshan Giant Buddha was built during the Tang Dynasty (618 – 907). It is carved out of a cliff face that lies at the confluence of the Minjiang, Dadu and Qingyi rivers in the southern part of Sichuan province

Great Wall of China stretches from Shanhaiguan in the east, to Lop Lake in the west, along an arc that roughly delineates the southern edge of Inner Mongolia. The most comprehensive archaeological survey has concluded that all the walls measure 8,851 km (5,500 miles). One of the most famous is the wall built between 220–206 BC by the first Emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang. Little of that wall remains; the majority of the existing wall was built during the Ming Dynasty

The Terracotta Army (or Terracotta Warriors and Horses) is a collection of 8,000 life-size Chinese terracotta figures of warriors and horses created 2,200 years ago and located near the Mausoleum of the First Emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang. The figures were discovered in 1974 near Xi'an, Shaanxi province, China

Xi’an is the starting point of the Silk Road

Sansha is a prefecture within the bailiwick of Hainan province which administers (actually or nominally) several island groups and undersea atolls in the South China Sea, comprising the Spratly and Paracel Islands as well as the Macclesfield Bank. The entire territory is disputed

Three Gorges Dam is a hydroelectric dam that spans the Yangtze River in Hubei province. The Three Gorges Dam is the world's largest power station in terms of installed capacity. Opened in 2008

Shenyang is the provincial capital and largest city of Liaoning Province

Dalian is a port city in Liaoning

Hulunbuir is a city in Inner Mongolia, and is the world’s largest city by area

Zhengdhou is the capital of Henan Province

Xiamen, formerly Amoy, is a city beside the Taiwan Strait

Sanxingdui is an archaeological site and a major Bronze Age culture in modern Sichuan

Porcelain Tower of Nanking is a reconstruction of a Ming Dynasty pagoda

Datang in China is known as ‘Sock City’. The town produces 8 billion pairs of socks each year

Mogao Caves, also known as the Thousand Buddha Grottoes or Caves of the Thousand Buddhas, form a system of 492 temples on the Silk Road, in Gansu province

Three-North Shelter Forest Program, also known as the Great Green Wall, is a series of human-planted windbreaking forest strips in China, designed to hold back the expansion of the Gobi Desert

The mines north of Bayan Obo in Inner Mongolia are the largest deposits of rare-earth metals yet found

Tuoketuo Power Station is the largest coal-fired power station in the world. It is located in Inner Mongolia

There are six national parks in China. Five are on Taiwan, including Takoro National Park. The only park on the mainland is Kinmen National Park

Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge (HZMB) on the Pearl River Delta was completed in 2018. Total length is 55 km

Danyang–Kunshan Grand Bridge is the world's longest bridge. It is a 164 km long viaduct on the Beijing–Shanghai High-Speed Railway

The Grand Canal of China is the longest ancient canal or artificial river in the world. It passes through the cities of Beijing and Tianjin. The oldest parts of the canal date back to the 5th century BC. Grand Canal ends at Hangzhou

The Lingqu canal in China is the oldest existing canal in the world

Three Parallel Rivers of Yunnan Protected Areas is a World Heritage Site. It lies within the drainage basins of the upper reaches of the Yangtze, Mekong and Salween rivers

Yangtze River, or Chang Jiang, is the longest river in Asia and the longest river to flow through one country

Yellow River, or Huang He, is the second-longest river in China. Known as “China’s sorrow” due to floods

Qiantang River and bay are known for the world's largest tidal bore

Qinghai Lake is the largest lake in China. Located in Qinghai province, it is classified as a saline and alkaline lake

Bohai Sea is the innermost gulf of the Yellow Sea

Autonomous regions

An autonomous region is a first-level administrative subdivision of China. The Inner Mongolia autonomous region was established in 1947; Xinjiang was made autonomous in 1955; Guangxi and Ningxia in 1958, and Tibet in 1965

Xanadu, or more accurately Shangdu, was the summer capital of Kublai Khan's Yuan Dynasty in China, after he decided to move the capital of the Yuan Dynasty to Dadu, present-day Beijing. The city was located in Inner Mongolia

Potala Palace was the chief residence of the Dalai Lama until the 14th Dalai Lama fled to India during the 1959 Tibetan uprising. It is now a museum and World Heritage Site. The White Palace is the part of the Potala Palace that makes up the living quarters of the Dalai Lama. The Red Palace is completely devoted to religious study and Buddhist prayer

There have been no recorded attempts to climb Mount Kailash, in Tibet; it is considered off limits to climbers in deference to Buddhist and Hindu beliefs. It is the most significant peak in the world that has not seen any known climbing attempts. Mount Kailash is the source of the Indus and Brahmaputra rivers

Larung Gar in Tibet has a population of over 40,000 which comprises primarily monks and nuns making it possibly the largest religious institute in the world

Yarlong Tsangpo Grand Canyon in Tibet is the deepest canyon in the world

Xinjiang is the largest autonomous community in China. It is home to a number of ethnic groups including the Uyghur. Taklamakan Desert is a desert in southwest Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. Urumqi is the capital of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region

Turpan depression is a fault-bounded trough in Xinjiang

Hong Kong


Flag of Hong Kong depicts a white stylised five-petal Hong Kong orchid tree (Bauhinia blakeana)

Hong Kong ("Fragrant Harbour"), officially known as Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China, is a city state with a high degree of autonomy on the southern coast of China at the Pearl River Estuary and the South China Sea

The territory's 1,104 km2 area consists of Hong Kong Island, the Kowloon Peninsula, the New Territories, and over 200 offshore islands, of which the largest is Lantau Island

Hong Kong is the world’s largest container port

Stonecutters Bridge is a high level cable-stayed bridge which spans the Rambler Channel in Hong Kong, connecting Tsing Yi Island and Stonecutters Island. The bridge deck was completed in 2009 making this the second longest cable-stayed span in the world

The Star Ferry service, founded in 1888, operates two lines across Victoria Harbour

Hong Kong International Airport is located on the island of Chek Lap Kok. It replaced the overcrowded Kai Tak Airport in Kowloon in 1998

The International Commerce Centre (ICC), at 484 m high, is the tallest building in Hong Kong

Victoria Peak, the highest mountain on Hong Kong island, is a major tourist attraction


Flag of Macau.svg.png

Flag of Macau depicts a lotus flower

Macau is a Special Administrative Region of China. Macau was administered by Portugal from the 16th century until 1999

Macau lies on the western side of the Pearl River Delta across from Hong Kong, and it is also bordered by Guangdong Province to the north and the South China Sea to the east and south

Macau became the world's largest gambling centre in 2006. Casinos on the Cotai Strip include The Venetian Macau, City of Dreams, and Galaxy Macau

Macau is the most densely populated region in the world

The Macau pataca is the currency of Macau



Flag of India has the Ashoka Chakra, a 24-spoke wheel, at its centre

Capital New Delhi
Largest cities Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad
Currency Rupee
Highest point Kangchenjunga

India is the seventh largest country by area, and the second most populous country with over 1.3 billion people

India is the most populous democracy in the world

India is a federation composed of 28 states and 8 union territories


Amaravati is the state capital of Andhra Pradesh

Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, formerly known as New Hyderabad Airport, replaced Begumpet Airport in 2008

Dispur is the state capital of Assam

Kaziranga National Park in the state of Assam hosts two-thirds of the world's great one-horned rhinoceroses

Majuli is a river island in the Brahmaputra River

Patna is the state capital of Bihar

Panaji is the state capital of Goa

Goa was a former Portuguese colony, annexed by India in 1961

Vasco da Gama is the largest city in Goa

Malabar coast runs southwards from Goa

Ahmedabad is the largest city of Gujarat

Jamnagar Refinery is a private sector crude oil refinery owned by Reliance Industries in Jamnagar, Gujarat. The refinery was commissioned in 1999 with an installed capacity of 668,000 barrels per day. It is currently the largest refinery in the world

Statue of Unity is a 182 m monument of statesman and independence activist Sardar Patel in Gujarat. Completed in 2018, it is the tallest statue in the world

Surat is a city in Gujarat famous for its diamonds and textile industries. It was formerly a large seaport

Gir Forest National Park in Gujarat has a population of Asiatic lions

Dharamsala is the home of the Dalai Lama and the exiled Tibetan government in the state of Himachal Pradesh

Shimla was the summer capital of British Raj. It is the capital and the largest city of Himachal Pradesh

Bangalore is the state capital of Karnataka

Electronic City is an information technology hub in Bangalore

Mysore State was renamed Karnakata in 1973

Kochi (formerly known as Cochin) is the commercial capital of Kerala. The city is one of the principal seaports of the country

Bhopal is the state capital of Madhya Pradesh

Khajuraho Group of Monuments has the largest group of medieval Hindu and Jain temples, famous for their erotic sculptures

Mumbai is the state capital of Maharashtra

Bombay was renamed Mumbai in 1995

The metropolis of Mumbai and the city of Thane lie on Salsette Island, making it the 14th most populous island in the world

Mumbai is bounded by the Arabian Sea to the west

Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) is a railway station in Mumbai

Gateway of India is an arch-monument erected to commemorate the landing of King-Emperor George V, the first British monarch to visit India, in 1911

Powai Lake is an artificial lake in Mumbai

Mumbai has a large population of leopards

Nagpur is the seat of the annual winter session of the Maharashtra state assembly

Ellora is an archaeological site in the Indian state of Maharashtra built by the Rashtrakuta Dynasty. Famous for its monumental caves, Ellora is a World Heritage Site

Ajanta Caves in Maharashtra are rock-cut cave monuments dating from the 2nd century BC, containing paintings and sculpture considered to be masterpieces of both Buddhist religious art and universal pictorial art

Odisha (formerly Orissa, the official name until 2011), is a state located in Eastern India

Chandigarh is the state capital of Punjab

Chandigarh also serves as the state capital of Haryana

Amritsar was founded by Guru Ram Das in 1574

Rajasthan is the largest state by area

Jaipur is the state capital of Rajasthan

Jaipur is known as the Pink City of India

Jantar Mantar Observatory in Jaipur contains 12 sundials. Constructed by Jai Singh in the 18th century

Jodhpur is the second largest city in Rajasthan. It is known as the ‘Sun City’ and the ‘Blue City’

Sikkim is a landlocked Indian state nestled in the Himalayas. It is the least populous state in India and the second smallest in area after Goa. The capital and largest city is Gangtok

Chennai is the state capital of Tamil Nadu

Madras State was renamed Tamil Nadu in 1969

Madras was renamed Chennai in 1996

Cape Comorin is the geographical end of the Indian mainland, in Tamil Nadu state

Great Living Chola Temples are temples built during the Chola rule in the south of India

Madurai is referred to as the ‘Athens of the East’ perhaps due to its monumental temples

In June 2014, Telangana was separated from Andhra Pradesh as a new 29th state of India, with the city of Hyderabad as its capital. Hyderabad will continue to serve as the joint capital city for Andhra Pradesh and Telangana

Uttar Pradesh is the largest state by population

Uttar Pradesh is the most populous country subdivision in the world

Allahabad is a city in Uttar Pradesh

United Provinces is the former name of Uttar Pradesh

Lucknow is the state capital of Uttar Pradesh

Varanesi is a holy city on the banks of the Ganges in Uttar Pradesh. It is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world and probably the oldest of India

Completed in 1653, the Taj Mahal in Agra was built by the Mughal king Shah Jahan as the final resting place for his beloved wife, Mumtaz Mahal. Inscriptions from the Koran are engraved on the outside walls. Ustad Ahmad Lahori was the chief architect of the Taj Mahal

Agra is on the banks of the river Yamuna

Kolkata is the state capital of West Bengal

Calcutta was renamed Kolkata in 2001

Dum Dum is a district in Kolkata

Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport is located in Kolkata. The airport was originally known as Dum Dum Airport

Located on the west bank of the Hooghly River, Howrah is a twin city of Kolkata. It is West Bengal's second largest city in terms of both area and population. The two cities are connected by the Howrah Bridge

Siliguri Corridor or Chicken's Neck is a narrow stretch of land located in West Bengal that connects India's northeastern states to the rest of India, with Nepal and Bangladesh lying on either side of the corridor. The kingdom of Bhutan lies on the northern side of the corridor

Darjeeling is in West Bengal

Nanda Devi is the second highest mountain in India after Kangchenjunga and the highest located entirely within the country. (Kangchenjunga, which is higher, is on the border of India and Nepal)

Western Ghats is a mountain range parallel to the western coast of the Indian peninsula

Eastern Ghats are a discontinuous range of mountains along India's eastern coast

Rann of Kutch is a marshy desert in northwest India

Deccan Traps are a large igneous province located on the Deccan Plateau of west-central India, and one of the largest volcanic features on Earth. They consist of multiple layers of solidified flood basalt

Godavari is the longest river entirely within India

Punjab – means ‘five rivers’. Beus, Satluj (the longest), Ravi, Chenab and Jhelum

Pradesh refers to a province or state in various South Asian languages

Golden Triangle is a tourist circuit which connects Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur

Union territories

Delhi is officially the National Capital Territory of Delhi (NCT)

Delhi replaced Calcutta as capital of India in 1911

Indira Gandhi Airport serves Delhi. Renamed from Palam Airport in 1986

The Red Fort is a 17th century fort complex constructed by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in the walled city of Old Delhi that served as the residence of the Mughal Emperors. It also served as the capital of the Mughals until 1857, when Mughal emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar was exiled by the British Indian government

Qutb Minar complex consists of monuments and buildings from the Delhi Sultanate

Jammu and Kashmir is a region administered as a union territory and consisting of the southern portion of the larger Kashmir region. The region was formerly administered as a state until 2019

Ladakh was part of the Jammu and Kashmir state until 2019

Pondicherry is a city in the Union Territory of Puducherry. It was part of French India

Andaman and Nicobar Islands

A group of islands at the juncture of the Bay of Bengal and Andaman Sea, and are a Union Territory of India. The territory's capital is the Andamanese town of Port Blair

North Sentinel Island is one of the Andaman Islands. It is home to the Sentinelese, an indigenous people in self-isolation


A group of islands 200 to 300 km off of the coast of the southwest Indian state of Kerala in the Laccadive Sea. Union Territory formerly known as Laccadive Islands



Flag of Indonesia is very similar to the flag of Monaco, with a slightly lighter shade of red

Indonesia-CIA WFB Map.png
Capital Jakarta
Largest cities Jakarta, Surabaya, Bekasi, Bandung
Currency Rupiah
Highest point Puncak Jaya

Indonesia is the world's fourth-most-populous country and the most populous country in southern hemisphere

Indonesia consists of 13,500 islands

Indonesia is world’s leading producer of palm oil

83% of Bali's population adheres to Balinese Hinduism

Garuda is the national airline of Indonesia, and is named after a mystical, giant bird of Hinduism and Buddhist mythology

Java is the world’s most populous island

Jakarta is on the island of Java. It was formerly known as Batavia

Jakarta is the largest city in southern hemisphere

Jabodetabek or Greater Jakarta is an official and administrative definition of the urban area or megacity surrounding Jakarta

The name Borobudur was first written in Sir Thomas Raffles' book on Javan history

Merdeka Square is a large square in Jakarta

Istiqlal Mosque in Jakarta is the largest mosque in southeast Asia

Borobudur is a 9th century Mahayana Buddhist monument (stupa) in Magelang, Central Java. The monument comprises six square platforms topped by three circular platforms, and is decorated with 2,672 relief panels and 504 Buddha statues. It is the largest Buddhist monument on earth. It was built between 750 and 850 by the Javanese rulers of the Sailendra dynasty. Made of volcanic rock

Yogyakarta, on Java, served as the Indonesian capital from 1946 to 1948

Surabaya is the capital city of the province of East Java

Sangiran is an archaeological excavation site in Java. It is an mportant site for studying fossil man

Semeru is an active volcano and is the highest point on Java

Nusa Kanbangan island is located in the Indian Ocean, separated by a narrow strait from the south coast of Java

Mount Bromo is an active volcano and part of the Tengger Massif in East Java

Lake Toba, in Sumatra, is the largest volcanic lake in the world

Medan is the largest city on Sumatra

Palembang is the capital city of the South Sumatra province. Formerly the capital city of the Kingdom of Srivijaya, a powerful Malay kingdom

Mount Kerinci is an active volcano and is the highest point on Sumatra

Rakata is a stratovolcano on the Indonesian island of Krakatoa in the Sunda Strait between the islands of Sumatra and Java. It is the largest, and southernmost, of three volcanoes that formed the island Krakatoa (the others being Danan and Perboewatan) and the only one not totally destroyed in the eruption of 1883

Anak Krakatau, the ‘child of Krakatoa’, is new island in the Sunda Strait

Bali lies between Java and Lombok in the Lesser Sunda Islands

Kuta is a tourist resort in Bali

Denpasar is the capital of Bali

Mount Tambora is on island of Sumbawa, located in the middle of the Lesser Sunda Islands chain

Sulawesi was formerly known as the Celebes

Pettakere cave in South Sulawesi contains paintings from prehistoric times

Makassar is the largest city on Sulawesi

Makassar Strait lies between the islands of Borneo and Sulawesi. To the north it joins the Celebes Sea, while to the south it meets the Java Sea

Maluku Islands (also known as the Moluccas, the Spice Islands) are an archipelago in Indonesia

Ternate is an island in the Maluku Islands. It was the centre of the powerful former Sultanate of Ternate

Kalimantan is the Indonesian portion of the island of Borneo. It constitutes 73% of the island's area

The western portion of Papua New Guinea (Irian in Indonesian) was formerly a Dutch colony and is now incorporated into Indonesia as the provinces: West Irian Jaya, with Manokwari as its capital, and Papua (formerly Irian Jaya) with the city of Jayapura as its capital

Puncak Jaya or Carstensz Pyramid (4,884 m) is the highest summit of Mount Carstensz in the Sudirman Range of the western central highlands of Papua Province. It is the highest mountain in Indonesia and in Oceania

Lorenz National Park is located in Papua Province



Flag of Iran has the national emblem centred on the white band and the takbir written 11 times each in the Kufic script in white, at the bottom of the green and the top of the red band

Capital Tehran
Largest cities Tehran, Mashhad, Isfahan
Currency Rial
Highest point Mount Damavand

Tehran is the largest city in Western Asia

Azadi Tower, literally the Freedom Tower or Liberty Tower marks the west entrance to the city of Tehran

Milad Tower is a multi-purpose concrete tower in Tehran built in 2007. Milad Tower is the sixth tallest tower in the world

Saadabad Palace in Tehran is the official residence of the President of Iran

Golestan Palace is the former royal Qajar complex in Tehran

Iran Mall in Tehran is the biggest shopping mall in the world in terms of area

Persopolis was the ancient ceremonial capital of the Persian Empire. 70km from Shiraz in Iran. Persopolis was founded in 512 BC by Darius the Great, and was largely built by his son Xerxes I. Destroyed by Alexander the Great

Behistun Inscription is a multi-lingual inscription located on Mount Behistun. Authored by Darius the Great sometime between his coronation as king of the Persian Empire in 522 BC and his death in 486 BC, the inscription begins with a brief autobiography of Darius, including his ancestry and lineage. Later in the inscription, Darius provides a lengthy sequence of events following the deaths of Cyrus the Great and Cambyses II

Isfahan (or Esfahan) is Iran’s third largest city. It flourished from 1050 to 1722, particularly in the 16th century under the Safavid dynasty, when it became the capital of Persia

Kish resort island is in the Persian Gulf

Bandar-Abbas is a port city of the southern coast of Iran. The city occupies a strategic position on the Straits of Hormuz

Yazd is nicknamed the city of windcatchers because of its ancient Persian windcatchers. It is also very well known for its Zoroastrian fire temples

Nishapur is a city close to the turquoise mines

Khuzestan is the province with the oldest history and was the birthplace of the Elam civilization

Qom is the largest center for Shi'a scholarship in the world

Alborz mountains stretch along the entire southern coast of the Caspian Sea. Mount Damavand, which is the highest mountain in Asia west of the Hindu Kush and the highest volcano in Asia, is located in the Central Alborz Mountains



Flag of Iraq has the takbir in Kufic script written in the centre

Capital Baghdad
Largest cities Baghdad, Basra
Currency Dinar
Highest point Cheekha Dar

Baghdad is on the River Tigris

The caliph Al-Mansur commissioned the construction of Baghdad in 762

Baghdad was ruled by Ottoman Empire from the 16th century to the 19th century

Victory Arch (also called the Swords of Qadisiyah and Hands of Victory) are a pair of triumphal arches in central Baghdad. Opened in 1989 to commemorate the Iran–Iraq War

Ur is in south Iraq

Tigris and Euphrates run south through the centre of Iraq and flow into the Shatt al-Arab near the Persian Gulf

Basra lies on the Shatt al-Arab river

Great Mosque of Samarra was, for a time, the largest mosque in the world; its minaret, the Malwiya Tower, is a spiraling cone 52 m high

Najaf is the third-holiest city in Shia Islam

Green Zone is the most common name for the International Zone of Baghdad

Great Mosque of al-Nuri was a mosque in Mosul. It was famous for its leaning minaret, which gave the city its nickname ‘the hunchback’. Destroyed by ISIS in 2017

Erbil is the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan. Kurdistan roughly encompasses the northwestern Zagros and the eastern Taurus mountain ranges



Flag of Israel has a blue hexagram in the centre

Capital Jerusalem
Largest cities Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa
Currency Shekel
Highest point Mount Meron

Old City is a walled area within Jerusalem. Today, the Old City is roughly divided into the Muslim Quarter, the Christian Quarter, the Jewish Quarter and the Armenian Quarter

Al-Aqsa is the largest mosque in Jerusalem

Al-Quds is the Arabic name for Jerusalem

The Dome of the Rock is an Islamic shrine in what Muslims call the Noble Sanctuary, which Jews and Christians call the Temple Mount – it remains one of the best known landmarks of Jerusalem. It was built between 687 and 691 by the 9th Caliph, Abd al-Malik. For centuries, European travelers have called it the Mosque of Umar

Mount of Olives is a limestone ridge east of Jerusalem. At the foot of the Mount of Olives lies the Garden of Gethsemane

Wailing Wall is a remnant of the ancient wall that surrounded the Jewish Temple's courtyard. Also known as the Western Wall

Church of the Holy Sepulchre, also called the Church of the Resurrection by Eastern Christians, is a church within the walled Old City of Jerusalem. The site is venerated as Golgotha (the Hill of Calvary), where Jesus was crucified, and is said to also contain the place where Jesus was buried (the sepulchre)

Pool of Bethesda is a pool of water in the Muslim Quarter of Jerusalem. It is known from the New Testament story of healing the paralytic at Bethesda, from the Gospel of John

Mount Zion is a hill in Jerusalem just outside the walls of the Old City

Muristan is a complex of streets and shops in the Christian Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem. The site was the location of the first hospital of the Knights Hospitaller

Nazareth is known as the ‘Arab capital of Israel"

Masada is an ancient fortification in Israel situated on top of an isolated rock plateau, overlooking the Dead Sea. Herod the Great built palaces for himself on the mountain

Israeli West Bank barrier is a separation barrier built by Israel in the West Bank or along the 1949 Armistice Line (‘Green Line’). Upon completion, its total length will be approximately 700 km

West Bank is the west bank of the River Jordan

Judea and Samaria are part of the West Bank

Cave of the Patriarchs is a series of caves located in the heart of the Old City of Hebron in the southern West Bank. According to the Abrahamic religions, the cave and adjoining field were purchased by Abraham as a burial plot

Haifa is located on the northern slope of Mount Carmel

Haifa is a major seaport located on Israel's Mediterranean coastline

Tel Aviv was founded by the Jewish community on the outskirts of the ancient port city of Jaffa in 1909

Tel Aviv the country's financial capital

Tel Aviv's White City, around the city centre, contains more than 5,000 Modernist-style buildings inspired by the Bauhaus school and Le Corbusier

Beersheba is the largest city in the Negev desert of Israel, and is often called the ‘Capital of the Negev’. Northernmost extent of Israel, in the Bible

Sea of Galilee, or Lake Tiberias, is the largest freshwater lake in Israel. It is the lowest freshwater lake on Earth and the second lowest lake overall (after the Dead Sea, a saltwater lake). The lake is fed partly by underground springs although its main source is the Jordan River which flows through it from north to south

Jordan Rift Valley is the result of tectonic movements within the Dead Sea Transform (DSF) fault system

Rujm el-Hiri, also known as the ‘wheel of giants’, is an ancient megalithic monument consisting of concentric circles of stone with a tumulus at the centre. Located in the Golan Heights

Since the Six-Day War of 1967, the western two-thirds of the Golan Heights has been occupied and administered by Israel, whereas the eastern third remains under the control of Syria



Flag of Japan is known as Hinomaru (‘circle of the sun’)

Capital Tokyo
Largest cities Tokyo, Yokohama, Osaka, Nagoya, Sapporo
Currency Yen
Highest point Mount Fuji
Japan-CIA WFB Map.png

Japan is a stratovolcanic archipelago of 6,852 islands. The four largest are Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu, and Shikoku. Japan's population of 126 million is the world's tenth largest. Approximately 13 million people live in Tokyo. The Greater Tokyo Area is the world's largest metropolitan area, with over 37 million residents

Japan is most populous country that does not have a land border with another country

Japan consists of 47 prefectures


Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park contains A-Bomb Dome, Children’s Peace Monument, and Rest House. Opened in 1954Ginza is a shopping district in Tokyo

Tokyo is on River Sumida

Tokyo Tower is an Eiffel Tower-inspired lattice tower

Completed in 2012, the Tokyo Skytree is the tallest tower in the world (634 m)

Tokyo Disneyland near Tokyo was the first Disney park to be built outside of the United States and opened in 1983

Shinjuku, in Tokyo, is the busiest railway station in the world

Shinkansen train running between Toyko and Osaka is known as the ‘bullet train’

Shibuya Crossing is a popular scramble crossing. It is located in front of the Shibuya Station Hachiko exit and stops vehicles in all directions to allow pedestrians to inundate the entire intersection

Minato is a special ward in Tokyo. It host many embassies, and the headquarters of a number of Japanese and international firms

Yasukuni Jinja is a Japanese Shinto shrine in Tokyo that is at the centre of an international controversy. It is a shrine to war dead who served the Emperor of Japan during wars from 1867–1951

The Budokan in Tokyo was the location where many "Live at the Budokan" albums were recorded

Tokyo International Airport, commonly known as Haneda Airport, and Narita International Airport are the two international airports serving the Greater Tokyo Area

Yamate Tunnel in Tokyo is the longest in-city road tunnel in the world. The overall length is 18.2 km

Kanto region includes the Greater Tokyo Area and encompasses seven prefectures

Kansai International Airport was built on man-made island in Osaka

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park contains A-Bomb Dome, Children’s Peace Monument, and Rest House. Opened in 1954

Yokohama is a major commercial hub of the Greater Tokyo Area. Yokohama developed rapidly as Japan's prominent port city following the end of Japan's isolation in the mid 19th century

Historically a merchant city, Osaka has also been known as the "nation's kitchen" and served as a centre for the rice trade during the Edo period

Ryoan-ji is a Zen temple in Kyoto with a ‘dry landscape’ garden

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park contains A-Bomb Dome, Children’s Peace Monument, and Rest House. Opened in 1954

Ise Grand Shrine is a Shinto shrine dedicated to the sun goddess Amaterasu

Kashiwazaki-Kariwa, located in the Niigata Prefecture of Japan, is the largest nuclear generating station in the world by net electrical power rating

Akashi Kaikyo Bridge links Kobe on the Japanese mainland of Honshu to Iwaya on Awaji Island. It crosses the Akashi Strait and had the longest central span of any suspension bridge in the world until 2022 when the 1915 Canakkale Bridge opened in Turkey

Heian-kyo was one of several former names for Kyoto. It was the capital of Japan for over one thousand years, from 794 to 1868 with an interruption in 1180

Kiyomizu Temple – complex of Buddhist temples in Kyoto

Lake Biwa is the largest freshwater lake in Japan

Iwami Ginzan mine reached its peak production in the early 17th century of approximately 38 tons of silver a year which was then a third of world production

Mount Fuji is one of Japan's ‘Three Holy Mountains’ (Sanreizan) along with Mount Tate and Mount Haku. Highest mountain in Japan

Mount Ontake is the second highest volcano in Japan, after Mount Fuji

Himeji Castle is a hilltop Japanese castle comprising a network of 83 buildings with advanced defensive systems from the feudal period. Himeji Castle is the largest and most visited castle in Japan, and it was registered in 1993 as one of the first World Heritage Sites in the country

Nara Prefecture in the Kansai Region has the distinction of having more World Heritage Listings than any other prefecture in Japan


Tsugaru Strait separates Hokkaido from Honshu, although the two islands are connected by the underwater Seikan Tunnel (the longest railway tunnel in the world). It is a channel connecting the Sea of Japan with the Pacific Ocean

The largest city on Hokkaido is its capital, Sapporo

Sapporo Snow Festival is held annually in Sapporo over seven days in February

Mount Usu is an active stratovolcano on Hokkaido

Shiretoko Peninsula is located on the easternmost portion of Hokkaido, protruding into the Sea of Okhotsk

Cape Soya is the northernmost point on Hokkaido


Kanmon Straits separates Kyushu from Honshu

Fukuoka is the largest city on Kyushu

Nagasaki became the sole port used for trade with the Portuguese and Dutch during the 16th through 19th centuries

Dejima was a small artificial island built in the bay of Nagasaki in 1634 by local merchants. This island remained as the single place of direct trade and exchange between Japan and the outside world during the Edo period

Kagoshima is known as the ‘Naples of the East’

Mount Aso is the largest active volcano in Japan. It stands in Aso Kuju National Park on the island of Kyushu. Aso has one of the largest calderas in the world

Tsushima Island is situated between the Tsushima Strait and Korea Strait, approximately halfway between Kyushu and the Korean Peninsula


Shikoku is south of Honshu and northeast of Kyushu

Matsuyama is the largest city on Shikoku

Okinawa is Japan's southernmost prefecture. Okinawa's capital, Naha, is located in the largest and most populous island, Okinawa Island. The disputed Senkaku Islands (claimed by China where they are known as Daioyu Islands, and Taiwan where they are known as Tiaoyutai Islands) are also administered as part of Okinawa Prefecture

Ryukyu Islands stretch southwest from Kyushu to Taiwan. Administratively, the islands are divided into Kagoshima Prefecture in the north and Okinawa Prefecture in the south

Seto Inland Sea is the body of water separating Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyushu

Bonin Islands, also known as the Ogasawara Islands, are an archipelago of over 30 subtropical and tropical islands, 1,000 km south of Tokyo

Iwo Jima lies south of the Bonin Islands. The highest point is Mount Suribachi



Flag of Jordan is based on the 1916 flag of the Arab Revolt against the Ottoman Empire

Capital Amman
Largest cities Amman, Zarqa
Currency Dinar
Highest point Jabal Umm ad Dami

The Hashemeite Kingdom of Jordan was known as Transjordan

Amman was known as Philadelphia to the Greeks

Petra was described as ‘a rose-red city half as old as time’ in a sonnet by John Burgon

Petra was the capital of the ancient kingdom of Nabataea, dating from 4th century BC. The site remained unknown to the Western world until 1812, when it was introduced by Swiss explorer Johann Ludwig Burckhardt

Petra was named amongst the New7Wonders of the World in 2007

Aqaba is the largest city on the Gulf of Aqaba and Jordan's only coastal city

Madaba’s main attraction is its Byzantine mosaics

Wadi Rum is the largest wadi in Jordan


Capital Kuwait City
Largest cities Kuwait City
Currency Dinar
Highest point Mutla Ridge

Situated in the northern edge of Eastern Arabia at the tip of the Persian Gulf, Kuwait shares borders with Iraq and Saudi Arabia

Kuwait is a constitutional emirate with an elected parliamentary system

Bubiyan Island is the largest island in the Kuwaiti coastal island chain

Al Hamra tower in Kuwait City is the tallest building in Kuwait and the tallest sculpted tower in the world

Kuwait Towers are a group of three slender towers in Kuwait City. The main tower is 187 m high and carries two spheres. The lower sphere holds in its bottom half a water tank of 4,500 cubic meters and in its upper half a restaurant

Kuwait has the world's sixth largest oil reserves. The Kuwaiti dinar is the highest valued currency in the world

House of Al Sabah is the ruling family of Kuwait



Flag of Kyrgyzstan contains a depiction of a yurt in a yellow sun

Capital Bishkek
Largest cities Bishkek, Osh
Currency Som
Highest point Jengish Chokusu

Bishkek was renamed Frunze in 1926, after the Bolshevik military leader Mikhail Frunze. In 1991, the Kyrgyzstan parliament restored the city's historical name

The main government building in Bishkek is the White House

Ala-Too Square is the central square in Bishkek. In 2005, the square was the site of the largest anti-government protest of Kyrgyzstan's Tulip Revolution

The mountainous region of the Tian Shan covers over 80% of the country

Issyk-Kul Lake is the second largest mountain lake in the world after Titicaca

Manas International Airport is the main airport in Kyrgyzstan


Capital Vientiane
Largest cities Vientiane
Currency Kip
Highest point Phou Bia

Laos traces its history to the Kingdom of Lan Xang or ‘Land of a Million Elephants’, which existed from the 14th to the 18th century

Laos is the only landlocked country in Southeast Asia

The Mekong River forms a large part of the western boundary with Thailand

The Plain of Jars is a large group of historic cultural sites in Laos containing thousands of stone jars

Until the communist takeover in 1975, Luang Prabang was the royal capital and seat of government of the Kingdom of Laos

Laos was bombed heavily in the Vietnam War. It holds the dubious distinction of being the most bombed country in the world

Vientiane is on a bend of the Mekong River, at which point it forms the border with Thailand

Luang Prabang is a World Heritage Site with numerous Buddhist temples and monasteries



Flag of Lebanon is charged with a cedar tree

Capital Beirut
Largest cities Beirut, Tripoli, Sidon, Tyre
Currency Pound
Highest point Qurnat as Sawda

Lebanon is bordered by Syria to the north and east and Israel to the south

The border with the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights is disputed by Lebanon in a small area called Shebaa Farms

Baalbek is a town in the Beqaa Valley of Lebanon. It is famous for its exquisitely detailed yet monumentally scaled temple ruins of the Roman period, when Baalbek, then known as Heliopolis, was one of the largest sanctuaries in the Empire. It is Lebanon's greatest Roman treasure

The Beqaa Valley is home to Lebanon's famous vineyards and wineries

Tripoli is the largest city in northern Lebanon

Litani is the longest river in Lebanon

Byblos is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world and is a World Heritage Site

Tyre was one of the earliest Phoenician metropolises



The 14-point star on the flag of Malaysia is known as the Federal Star

Capital Kuala Lumpur
Largest cities Kuala Lumpur, Seberang Perai
Currency Ringgit
Highest point Mount Kinabalu

Malaysia is separated by the South China Sea into Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia (Malaysian Borneo). Peninsular Malaysia shares a land border with Thailand. East Malaysia shares land borders with Brunei and Indonesia

Malaysia has moved many administrative functions from Kuala Lumpur to a suburb of Kuala Lumpur called Putrajaya. Kuala Lumpur remains the official capital. Putrajaya is part of a regional ‘Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC)’. The MSC itself is also home to Kuala Lumpur International Airport and the Petronas Twin Towers

Petronas Towers were the tallest buildings in the world from 1998 to 2004 and remain the tallest twin towers in the world

Merdeka 118 is a 118-story, 678.9 m tall skyscraper in Kuala Lumpur. It is the world's second-tallest building and should be completed by the end of 2022

Kuala Lumpur is at the confluence of the rivers Klang and Gombak

George Town is the capital city of the state of Penang in Malaysia. Named after Britain's King George III, the city is located on the northeast corner of Penang Island. George Town was the capital of the Straits Settlements

Sabah is one of the 13 member states of Malaysia, and is its easternmost state. It is located on the northern portion of the island of Borneo. It is the second largest state in the country after Sarawak, which it borders on its southwest

Kuching is the capital and the most populous city in the state of Sarawak

Mount Kinabalu on the island of Borneo is the highest mountain in the Malay Archipelago

The southernmost point of continental Eurasia, Tanjung Piai, is in Malaysia

Banggi Island is the largest island in Malaysia

Crocker Range is a mountain range on the island of Borneo. Politically, it lies within the boundary of the Malaysian state of Sabah. It contains Mount Kinabalu,  the highest mountain in the Malay Archipelago

Labuan is a Federal Territory known as an offshore financial centre

First World Hotel & Plaza in Pahang is the largest hotel in the world, It has 7,351 rooms


Capital Male
Largest cities Male
Currency Rufiyaa
Highest point Villingili

Maldives consists of 1,192 coral islands grouped in a double chain of 26 atolls. The chains stand in the Laccadive Sea 600 km southwest of India

Maldives has the lowest natural highest point in the world, at 2.4 m

Historically Maldives provided enormous quantities of cowry shells

Ibrahim Nasir International Airport serves the Maldives



Flag of Mongolia has the Soyombo symbol on the leftmost stripe

Capital Ulaanbaatar
Largest cities Ulaanbaatar
Currency Tugrik
Highest point Khuiten Peak

The geography of Mongolia is varied, with the Gobi Desert to the south and with cold and mountainous regions to the north and west. Much of Mongolia consists of steppes

Mongolia has the lowest population density of all sovereign states

Oyu Tolgoi (‘Turquoise Hill’) mining project is the largest financial undertaking in Mongolia's history and is expected upon completion to account for more than 30% of the country's gross domestic product. Copper production is expected to reach 450,000 tonnes annually. Financing for the project has come in part from the Rio Tinto Group

Genghis Khan Equestrian Statue is a 40 m tall statue of Genghis Khan on horseback, on the bank of the Tuul River east of Ulaanbaatar (Ulan Bator), where according to legend, he found a golden whip

Ulaanbaatar was previously anglicised as Ulan Bator. Means “Red Hero”.  is the coldest capital city

Founded in 1639 as a nomadic Buddhist monastic centre, Ulaanbaatar is at the confluence of the Tuul and Selbe rivers

The International Airport is named after Genghis Khan

Myanmar (Burma)


Current flag of Myanmar was adopted in 2010

Capital Naypyidaw
Largest cities Yangon, Mandalay, Naypyidaw
Currency Kyat
Highest point Hkakabo Razi

One-third of Burma's total perimeter forms an uninterrupted coastline along the Bay of Bengal and the Andaman Sea

Naypyidaw is the capital of Myanmar. In 2005, the administrative capital was officially moved to a greenfield site 2 miles west of Pyinmana, and approximately 200 miles north of Yangon, the previous capital. The capital's official name was announced in 2006

Naypyidaw means “city of the kings”

Yangon, also known as Rangoon (“end of strife”) is the largest city and former capital of Burma

Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon is the most sacred Buddhist pagoda for the Burmese as it is believed to contain relics of four previous Buddhas

Sule Pagoda is a stupa in Yangon that served as a rallying point in the 1988 uprisings, 2007 Saffron Revolution ad 2021 Spring Revolution

Bagan Archaeological Zone has over 2000 Buddhist temples and pagodas



The double-pennant flag of Nepal is the world's only non-quadrilateral state flag

Capital Kathmandu
Largest cities Kathmandu
Currency Rupee
Highest point Mount Everest

Nepal, officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is bordered by China and India

The mountainous north of Nepal has eight of the world's ten tallest mountains

Hinduism is practiced by 81% of Nepalis, the highest percentage of any country

Tenzing-Hillary Airport in Lukla, Nepal, is ranked as the most dangerous airport in the world

Lumbini is a Buddhist pilgrimage site in Nepal. It is the place where, according to Buddhist tradition, Queen Mayadevi gave birth to Siddhartha Gautama in 623 BC

Nepal time is UTC+05:45

North Korea

Capital Pyongyang
Largest cities Pyongyang, Hamhung
Currency Won
Highest point Paektu Mountain

North Korea is officially the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)

North Korea follows Songun, or "military-first" policy

Pyongyang means “flat land” or “peaceful land”

Pyongyang is located on the Taedong River

Ryugyong Hotel is a towering, empty concrete shell that was once intended for use as a hotel in Pyongyang. Construction started in 1987 and ceased in 1992. Construction resumed in 2008 and a partial opening was announced for 2013, but this was cancelled. It is the tallest unoccupied building in the world

Juche Tower is a monument in Pyongyang, named after the ideology of Juche introduced by its first leader Kim Il-sung

Rungrado 1st of May Stadium is a multi-purpose stadium on Rungra Island, Pyongyang. The stadium was originally built with an official capacity of 150,000

Grand Mass Gymnastics and Artistic Performance Arirang, also known as the Arirang Festival is a gymnastics and artistic festival held in the Rungrado 1st of May Stadium

Masikryong is a ski resort

Heaven Lake is a crater lake within a caldera atop Mount Paektu. Supposed birthplace of Kim Jong-il

Korean Demilitarized Zone is a de facto border barrier, which runs in the vicinity of the 38th parallel north

Northern Limit Line, or NLL, is the de facto maritime boundary between North and South Korea in the Yellow Sea

Air Koryo is the North Korean national airline

Songbun is the system of social status



Flag of Oman contains the national emblem (dagger and two swords)

Capital Muscat
Largest cities Muscat
Currency Rial
Highest point Jebel Shams

Oman is officially the Sultanate of Oman

Oman is ruled by the house of Al Said

The rocky Western Al Hajar Mountains dominate the landscape of Muscat

The Madha and Musandam exclaves are surrounded by the UAE on their land borders, with the Strait of Hormuz and Gulf of Oman forming Musandam's coastal boundaries

Masirah Island is the largest island of Oman

Wahiba sands is a region of desert in Oman

Oman is the oldest independent Arab state

Royal Opera House Muscat opened in 2011

In 2007, Oman's Arabian Oryx Sanctuary was the first site to be removed from the World Heritage list


Capital Islamabad
Largest cities Karachi, Lahore, Faisalabad, Rawalpindi
Currency Rupee
Highest point K2

Pakistan is officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan

Pakistan is the fifth most populous country in the world

Pakistan consists of the provinces of Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab, Sindh, and the federally-administered Islamabad Capital Territory. Additionally, Pakistan also administers two autonomous territories in the disputed region of Kashmir – Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Kashmir

Pakistan is divided into three major geographic areas: the northern highlands, the Indus River plain and the Balochistan Plateau. The northern highlands contain the Karakoram, Hindu Kush and Pamir mountain ranges, which contain some of the world's highest peaks, including K2. The Balochistan Plateau lies in the west and the Thar Desert in the east. The Indus River and its tributaries flow through the country from the Kashmir region to the Arabian Sea

Islamabad (meaning ‘Abode of Islam’ or ’Abode of Peace’) is the capital of Pakistan, and is the ninthlargest city in Pakistan. The city was built during the 1960s to replace Karachi as Pakistan's capital

Islamabad master plan was created by Greek architect Constantinos Doxiadis

Karachi is capital of province Sindh as well as the largest and most populous metropolitan city of Pakistan and the main seaport and financial centre of the country. Karachi is also known as “City of Lights” mainly due to the city's night life

Mazar-e-Quaid, also known as the Jinnah Mausoleum, is the final resting place of Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan. It is in Karachi

Lahore is the capital city of Punjab

Peshawar is the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (formerly called the North-West Frontier Province)

Rawalpindi is adjacent to Islamabad. It was briefly the country's capital while Islamabad was being constructed

Abbottabad is 150 km northeast of Peshawar

Gwadar Port is situated on the Arabian Sea. It features prominently in the China–Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) plan

Ranikot Fort, known as ‘The Great Wall of Sindh’, is the largest fort in the world

Waziristan is a mountainous region of northwest Pakistan, bordering Afghanistan. It comprises the area west and southwest of Peshawar

Masherbrum mountain was the first mapped peak in the Karakoram mountain range and was formerly known as K1

K2 (8,611 m) is the highest peak in the Karakoram range

Mangla Dam is located on the Jhelum River

Cholistan desert adjoins the Thar Desert

Taxila is an archaeological site in Punjab

Punjab is Pakistan's second largest province by area, after Balochistan, and its most populous province

Mohenjo-Daro, meaning 'Mound of the Dead Men', is an archaeological site in Sindh province and was one of the largest settlements of the Indus Valley Civilisation

Tarbela Dam on the Indus river is the largest earth-filled dam in the world

Baltoro Glacier runs through part of the Karakoram mountain range


Capital Manila
Largest cities Quezon City, Manila, Davao City
Currency Peso
Highest point Mount Apo

Philippines consists of 7,107 islands that are categorized broadly under three main geographical divisions: Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. Its capital city is Manila while its most populous city is Quezon City; both are part of Metro Manila

Philippines was named in honour of King Philip II of Spain

Luzon is the largest island. With a population of 48 million as of 2010, it is the fourth most populous island in the world after Java, Honshu and Great Britain

Manila is on the island of Luzon

Mount Pinatubo is an active stratovolcano in the Cabusilan Mountains on the island of Luzon. Erupted in 1991

Davao City is the largest city in Mindanao

Metro Cebu is the main urban centre of the island province of Cebu. Includes Cebu City and Lapu-Lapu City

Taal Lake is a freshwater lake on the island of Luzon. The lake fills Taal Caldera, a large volcanic caldera formed by very large eruptions between 500,000 and 100,000 years ago

Palawan is the largest island of the province of archipelagic province of Palawan

The longest river is the Cagayan River in northern Luzon

Roman Catholicism is the chief religion



Qatar's flag is the only national flag having a width more than twice its height

Capital Doha
Largest cities Doha
Currency Riyal
Highest point Qurayn Aba al Bawl

Following Ottoman rule, Qatar became a British protectorate in the early 20th century until gaining independence in 1971. Qatar has been ruled by the Al Thani family since the mid-19th century

Qatar’s sole land border is with Saudi Arabia to the south, with the rest of its territory surrounded by the Persian Gulf

Qatar is the world's richest country per capita

Al Jazeera headquarters are in Doha

Museum of Islamic Art, designed by I.M. Pei, is in Doha

National Museum of Qatar was designed by Jean Nouvel

Al Udeid Air Base houses Qatari Air Force, U.S. Air Force, Royal Air Force, and other Gulf War Coalition personnel and assets

Saudi Arabia


Flag of Saudi Arabia features the shahada and a sword

Capital Riyadh
Largest cities Riyadh, Jeddah, Mecca, Medina
Currency Riyal
Highest point Jabal Sawda

Saudi Arabia is the only nation with both a Red Sea coast and a Persian Gulf coast. It was founded in 1932 by Ibn Saud

Saudi Arabia has the second largest known oil reserves, behind Venezuela

Saudi Arabia is the largest country in the world by area with no permanent rivers

Riyadh is served by King Khalid International Airport

Masmak Fort in Riyadh was captured by Ibn Saud in 1902

Jeddah is the second largest city and the largest sea port on the Red Sea

Kingdom Tower in Jeddah will be the tallest structure in the world when completed. The tower was initially planned to be 1 mile high; however, the geology of the area proved unsuitable for a tower of that height

Jeddah Light is the tallest lighthouse in the world (133m)

Jeddah is served by King Abdulaziz International Airport

Hejaz is a region in the west Saudi Arabia. Defined primarily by its western border on the Red Sea, it extends from Haql on the Gulf of Aqaba to Jizan. Its main cities are Jeddah, Mecca and Medina

Ghawar is the largest oil field in the world. It is owned and operated by Saudi Aramco

Neom is the name of a future planned city to be built in the Tabuk Province of northwestern Saudi Arabia. It is planned to incorporate smart city technologies and to function as a tourist destination

The Line is a proposed smart city in Neom that will have no cars, no streets, and no carbon emissions. The city is part of Saudi Vision 2030 project

Abraj Al-Bait Towers, also known as the Mecca Royal Hotel Clock Tower, is a building complex in Mecca. The complex's hotel tower became the third tallest building in the world in 2012, surpassing Taiwan's Taipei 101 and surpassed only by Dubai's Burj Khalifa and Shanghai's Shanghai Tower. The central hotel building has the world's largest clock face

Al-Masjid al-Haram (Sacred Mosque) in Mecca is the largest mosque in the world

Mount Arafat is a hill 20 km from Mecca. According to some Islamic traditions, the hill is the place where the Prophet Muhammad stood and delivered the Farewell Sermon

Al-Masjid an-Nabawi (Prophet’s Mosque) in Medina was the second mosque built in the history of Islam and is now one of the largest mosques in the world. It is the second-holiest site in Islam, after al-Masjid al-Haram in Mecca

King Fahd Causeway is a series of bridges and causeways connecting Saudi Arabia and Bahrain. Passport Island is located on the King Fahd Causeway

Al-Ahsa Oasis is the largest oasis in the world

Salwa Canal is a proposed shipping route through Saudi Arabia along its border with Qatar, effectively turning the latter into an island


Capital Singapore
Largest cities Singapore
Currency Dollar
Highest point Bukit Timah Hill

Singapore is separated from Peninsular Malaysia by the Straits of Johor to the north, and from Indonesia's Riau Islands by the Singapore Strait to the south

Modern Singapore was founded in 1819 by Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles as a trading post of the East India Company. The British obtained sovereignty over the island in 1824, and Singapore became one of the British Straits Settlements in 1826

Singapore is derived from the Sanskrit word for ‘Lion City’

Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay is a waterside building located on six hectares of waterfront land alongside Marina Bay near the mouth of the Singapore River

Gardens by the Bay is a park of reclaimed land in central Singapore, adjacent to the Marina Reservoir

Marina Bay Sands is an integrated resort fronting Marina Bay in Singapore, owned by the Las Vegas Sands Corporation

ArtScience Museum is one of the attractions at Marina Bay Sands, an integrated resort in Singapore owned by the US Las Vegas Sands company

Orchard Road is an upmarket shopping area

Singapore Botanic Gardens is a tropical garden located at the fringe of the Orchard Road shopping district. It is one of three gardens, and the only tropical garden, to be honoured as a World Heritage Site

Singapore has the world's highest percentage of millionaires

Port of Singapore was also the busiest port in terms of total cargo tonnage handled until 2005, when it was surpassed by the Port of Shanghai

Singapore has four official languages: English, Malay, Mandarin Chinese, and Tamil

Singapore is served by Changi Airport

Merlion is the national symbol of Singapore. It is depicted as a mythical creature with the head of a lion and the body of a fish

Johor-Singapore causeway links the city of Johor Bahru in Malaysia across the Straits of Johor to the town of Woodlands in Singapore

Sentosa is an island located off the southern coast of Singapore's main island. Capella Hotel on the island was the location of the 2018 North Korea–United States Singapore Summit

South Korea


Flag of South Korea is also known as the Taegukgi. It has a red and blue Taegeuk in its centre, and four black trigrams

Capital Seoul
Largest cities Seoul, Busan, Incheon, Daegu
Currency Won
Highest point Hallasan

South Korea is officially the Republic of Korea (ROK)

Half of the country's 50 million people reside in the metropolitan area surrounding its capital, the Seoul Capital Area

Jejudo (Jeju Island) is the largest island on the Korean Peninsula. It is dominated by Hallasan (Halla Mountain): a volcano 1,950 m high and the highest mountain in South Korea

Jeju Volcanic Island and Lava Tubes is a World Heritage Site

Situated on the Han River, Seoul's history stretches back more than two thousand years when it was founded in 18 BC by Baekje

Seoul is the world's most wired city. It is served by the KTX high-speed rail and the Seoul Subway, the world's largest subway network

Seoul is divided into gu (districts). Each gu is divided into dong (neighbourhoods). Dong are divided into tong

Yeoui island in Seoul is often called "Korea's Wall Street"

Gangnam District is in Seoul. Gangnam means "South of the (Han) River"

Blue House in Seoul is the official residence of the head of state of South Korea

Lotte World Tower in Seoul is the tallest building in South Korea and the sixth tallest in the world

Seoul-Gimpo to Jeju is the world’s busiest passenger air route

Incheon International Airport is the largest airport in South Korea, the primary airport serving the Seoul Capital Area

Incheon has led the economic development of Korea by opening its port to the outside world

Busan (or Pusan) is the largest port. The city is located on the southeastern-most tip of the Korean peninsula

Sejong was founded in 2007 as the new planned capital of South Korea. The construction of the city should be completed in 2030

Shinsegae is a department store franchise. Its flagship store in Centum City, Busan, became the world's largest department store in 2009

Pyeongchang is located in the Taebaek Mountains region

Bridge of No Return crosses the Military Demarcation Line (MDL) between North Korea and South Korea

Sri Lanka


Flag of Sri Lanka features a golden lion holding a kastane sword in a maroon background with four gold bo leaves

Capital Colombo (see note below)
Largest cities Colombo
Currency Rupee
Highest point Mount Pedro

Note: Sri Jayawardenapura Kotte is the administrative capital of Sri Lanka. It is located beyond the eastern suburbs of the commercial capital Colombo and is often called New Capital Territory

In 1972, during Sirimavo Bandaranaike's second term as prime minister, Ceylon became a republic within the Commonwealth, and the name was changed to Sri Lanka

Sinhalese and Tamil are the two official languages of Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is separated from the Indian subcontinent by the Gulf of Mannar and Palk Strait

Adam's Bridge is a chain of limestone shoals, between Pamban Island, off the southeastern coast of Tamil Nadu, India, and Mannar Island, off the northwestern coast of Sri Lanka. Geological evidence suggests that this bridge is a former land connection between India and Sri Lanka

Sigiriya (‘lion’s rock’) is an archeological site in the central Matale District of Sri Lanka. It contains the ruins of an ancient palace complex, built during the reign of King Kasyapa (477–495 AD). Sigiriya rock is the hardened magma plug from an extinct and long-eroded volcano

Temple of the Tooth is a Buddhist temple in the city of Kandy. It is located in the royal palace complex of the former Kingdom of Kandy, which houses the relic of the tooth of Buddha

Trincomalee is a port in Sri Lanka

In Islamic tradition, Adam’s Peak is the site where Adam fell to earth and where his footprint can be found


Capital Damascus
Largest cities Aleppo, Damascus, Homs
Currency Pound
Highest point Mount Hermon

Damascus is among the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world

Umayyad Mosque, also known as the Great Mosque of Damascus, located in the old city of Damascus, is one of the largest and oldest mosques in the world

Barada River runs through Damascus

Homs is known as the “capital of the revolution”

Palmyra was an ancient Semitic city, located in Homs Governorate

The Dead Cities or Forgotten Cities are a group of 700 abandoned settlements in northwest Syria between Aleppo and Idlib. Most villages which date from the 1st to 7th centuries, became abandoned between the 8th and 10th centuries

Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES), also known as Rojava,is a de facto autonomous region in northeastern Syria

During the Syrian Civil War, Raqqa was captured in 2013 by the Syrian opposition and then by the Islamic State. ISIS made the city its capital in 2014

Mount Hermon’s summit straddles the border between Syria and Lebanon



Flag of Taiwan is known as the Blue Sky, White Sun, and a Wholly Red Earth

Capital Taipei
Largest cities New Taipei City
Currency Dollar
Highest point Yu Shan

Taiwan, officially the Republic of China (ROC), is a sovereign state. The Republic of China, originally based in mainland China, now governs the island of Taiwan. The People’s Republic of China also asserts itself to be the sole legal representation of China and claims Taiwan as its 23rd province to be under its sovereignty

Nine-dotted line refer to the demarcation line used initially by the government of Taiwan, and subsequently also by the government of China, for their claims of the major part of the South China Sea. The contested area includes the Paracel Islands, the Spratly Islands, and various other areas including the Pratas Islands, the Macclesfield Bank and the Scarborough Shoal

Yu Shan is also known as Jade Mountain

National Palace Museum in Taipei has a large permanent collection of ancient Chinese artefacts and artworks

Taipei 101 was the world's tallest building from its opening in 2004 until 2010

Taipei, New Taipei and Keelung form the largest metropolitan area of Taiwan

Taiwan also includes the Penghu, Kinmen, and Matsu islands

Taichung Power Plant is the fourth-largest coal-fired power station in the world



Flag of Tajikistan depicts a crown surmounted by an arc of seven stars

Capital Dushanbe
Largest cities Dushanbe. Khujand
Currency Somoni
Highest point Ismail Somoni Peak

Mountains cover more than 90% of Tajikistan

Dushanbe means "Monday" in the Tajik language. Dushanbe developed on the site of a Monday marketplace village. Known as Stalinabad between 1929 and 1961

Dushanbe Flagpole is the second tallest free-standing flagpole in the world, after the Jeddah Flagpole

Ismail Somoni Peak was known as Communism Peak until 1998

Lenin Peak is the second highest mountain in Tajikistan

Pamir Mountains lie mostly in Tajikistan

Fedchenko glacier in Tajikistan is the longest glacier in the world outside of the polar regions

Nurek Dam on the Vakhsh River is currently the second tallest man-made dam in the world, behind the Jinping-I Dam in China. The Rogun Dam, also along the Vakhsh in Tajikistan, may exceed it in size when completed, although construction was suspended in 2012 pending World Bank reports – the dam has drawn complaints from Uzbekistan, which fears it will negatively impact its lucrative cotton crops


Capital Bangkok
Largest cities Bangkok
Currency Baht
Highest point Doi Inthanon

Thailand is a monarchy headed by King Vajiralongkorn, Rama X, and governed by a military junta

Southern Thailand consists of the narrow Kra Isthmus that widens into the Malay Peninsula

Chao Phraya and the Mekong River are the water courses of rural Thailand

Chao Phraya flows through Bangkok and then into the Gulf of Thailand

Thailand is the only country in SE Asia never to have been colonized by a European power

In 2006, Suvarnabhumi Airport became Bangkok's official international airport, replacing Don Muang

Bangkok is known as the “Venice of the East”

Bangkok is known in Thailand as Krung Thep

Khao San Road is a backpacker centre in Bangkok

Wat Arun, the Erawan Shrine, and the Wat Phra Kaew (home to the Emerald Buddha) are all major religious sites in Bangkok

Bang Kwang Central Prison is known as the “Bangkok Hilton”

River Kwai is in western Thailand. The bridge of the Burma Railway crosses the river

Phuket is the biggest island in Thailand, in the Andaman Sea. Since the 1980s, the sandy beaches on the west coast of the island have been developed as tourist destinations, with Patong, Karon, and Kata being the most popular

Ayutthaya historical park covers the ruins of the old city of Ayutthaya, which was founded in 1350

Phi Phi islands are an island group between the island of Phuket and the Straits of Malacca

First Thai–Lao Friendship Bridge is a bridge over the Mekong. Opened in 1994

Kra Isthmus in Thailand is the narrowest part of the Malay Peninsula

Timor-Leste (East Timor)

Capital Dili
Largest cities Dili
Currency US dollar
Highest point Tatamailau

East Timor or Timor-Leste, officially the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste, comprises the eastern half of the island of Timor, the nearby islands of Atauro and Jaco, and Oecusse, an exclave within Indonesian West Timor

Timor-Leste was colonised by Portugal in the 16th century. It gained independence from Indonesia in 2002

Timor-Leste is the only Asian country that lies completely in the southern hemisphere

The island of Timor is the largest and easternmost of the Lesser Sunda Islands

The two official languages are Portuguese and Tetum

Dili is the chief port and commercial centre



The red stripe on the flag of Turkmenistan contains five carpet designs

Capital Ashgabat
Largest cities Ashgabat
Currency Manat
Highest point Ayrybaba

Turkmenistan possesses the world's fourth-largest reserves of natural gas and substantial oil resources

Galkynysh Gas Field is the world's second largest gas field

Darvaza gas crater, also known as the Door to Hell or Gates of Hell, is a burning natural gas field collapsed into a cavern

Karakum Desert occupies 80% of the area of Turkmenistan

Ashgabat was known as Poltoratsk between 1919 and 1927

First Baha'i House of Worship was completed in Ashgabat in 1908

Monument of Neutrality was built in 1998 on the orders of President Niyazov. The monument was topped by a 12 m tall gold-plated statue of Niyazov which rotated to always face the sun. It was dismantled and moved in 2010

Merv was a major city on the Silk Road. The site of ancient Merv is a World Heritage Site

Nisa was the first capital of the Parthians

United Arab Emirates

Capital Abu Dhabi
Largest cities Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah
Currency Dirham
Highest point Jebel Jais

Established in 1971, the country is a federation of seven emirates. The constituent emirates are Abu Dhabi (which serves as the capital), Ajman, Dubai, Fujairah, Ras al-Khaimah, Sharjah, and Umm al-Quwain. Each emirate is governed by an absolute monarch who jointly form the Federal Supreme Council

Formerly known as the Trucial States, the UAE were a British protectorate from 1820 until independence in 1971

The land border with Qatar is 19 kilometres; however, it is a source of ongoing dispute

The largest emirate, Abu Dhabi, accounts for 87% of the UAE's total area

Masdar is a project in Abu Dhabi. Its core is a planned city, which is being built by the Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company. Designed by Foster and Partners, the city will rely entirely on solar energy and other renewable energy sources, with a sustainable, zero-carbon, zero-waste ecology

Capital Gate is a skyscraper in Abu Dhabi adjacent to the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre designed with a striking lean

Ferrari World Abu Dhabi is an amusement park located on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi. It claims to be the largest indoor theme park in the world. Formula Rossa, the world's fastest roller coaster, is located here

When completed, Saadiyat Island is expected to become Abu Dhabi's cultural centre, with eight museums

Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi can hold 41,000 people

Al-Maktoum family rule Dubai

Burj al-Arab is the tallest building in the world used exclusively as a hotel (321 metres)

Burj al-Arab is the first '7 star' hotel, on an island close to Jumeirah beach, in Dubai. Chief designer was Tom Wright of WS Atkins

Burj Khalifa is the tallest man-made structure in the world, at 829.8 m. Designed by Adrian Smith of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill

A major island building project called ‘The World’ is being constructed off the coast of Dubai. It is a collection of 300 small private islands of varying sizes for individual development. The islands together form a large map of the world. Construction began in 2003, only to halt due to the 2008 financial crisis

Falconcity of Wonders, announced in 2005, is a project being built in Dubai that will feature life-size replicas of the Seven Wonders of the World and other famous monuments such as the Eiffel Tower, the Taj Mahal and the Leaning Tower of Pisa

Dubai Mall is the second largest mall in the world after the Iran Mall by total land area

Ain Dubai is the world’s largest Ferris wheel. Opened in 2021

Expo 2020 was hosted by Dubai

Dubai Creek Tower is an observation tower that is under construction. It will be the world’s tallest structure when completed

Dubai International Airport is the world's busiest airport for international traffic

Dubai Miracle Garden is currently the world's largest flower garden

Palm Jumeirah is an artificial archipelago off the coast of Dubai

Sharjah is the third largest and third most populous city in the United Arab Emirates

Kalba was a Trucial State that did not become part of UAE. It is an exclave of Sharjah

Ajman is the smallest of the emirates by area



The flag of Uzbekistan has twelve white stars

Capital Tashkent
Largest cities Tashkent, Samarkand
Currency Som
Highest point Khazret Sultan

Uzbekistan is the only Central Asian state to border all the other four “stans” (stan means ‘land of’)

Tashkent means “stone city”. After its destruction by Genghis Khan in 1219, the city was rebuilt and profited from the Silk Road. In 1865 it was conquered by the Russian Empire

Registan was the heart of the ancient city of Samarkand. It was a public square framed by three madrasahs of distinctive Islamic architecture

Gur-e-Amir is the mausoleum of Timur, in Samarkand

Located on the Silk Road, Bukhara has long been a centre of trade, scholarship, culture, and religion. The historic centre of Bukhara, which contains numerous mosques and madrasahs, has been listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site

Termez is the site of Alexander the Great's city Alexandria on the Oxus

Muruntau gold deposit is situated in the Qizilqum Desert. It is being mined in the world's largest open-pit gold mine

Namangan is an important craft and trade centre in the Fergana Valley

Karakalpakstan is an autonomous republic of Uzbekistan. It occupies the whole northwestern end of Uzbekistan. The capital is Nukus


Capital Hanoi
Largest cities Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Haiphong
Currency Dong
Highest point Fansipan

Vietnam was called Annam until 1945

Ho Chi Minh City is the largest city in Vietnam and is located near the Mekong Delta. Under the name Prey Nokor, it was the main port of Cambodia, before being annexed by the Vietnamese in the 17th century. Under the name Saigon, it was the capital of the French colony of Cochinchina, and later of the independent state of South Vietnam from 1954 to 1975

Ho Chi Minh City surrounds the Saigon River

Landmark 81 is a skyscraper in Ho Chi Minh City. It is the tallest building in Vietnam

Hanoi is 1000 years old. Originally called Thang Long (‘Ascending Dragon’)

Hanoi served as the capital of French Indochina from 1902 to 1954. From 1954 to 1976, it was the capital of North Vietnam, and it became the capital of a reunified Vietnam in 1976

Hanoi is on the Red River

Hoa La prison is known as the “Hanoi Hilton”

Haiphong is northern Vietnam's most important seaport

Hue in Vietnam is well known for its historic monuments, and it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site

Son Doong in Vietnam is the world’s largest cave

Ha Long Bay is a World Heritage Site featuring thousands of limestone karsts

Kinh are the majority ethnic group of Vietnam, comprising 86% of the population


Capital Sana’a
Largest cities Sana’a
Currency Rial
Highest point Jabal An-Nabi Shu’ayb

Sana’a is the centre of Sana'a Governorate

Great Mosque of Sana’a dates back to the 7th century, the period of Muhammad

Aden is a seaport city, located by the eastern approach to the Red Sea (the Gulf of Aden)

Aden was the capital of the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen until that country's unification with the Yemen Arab Republic, and again briefly served as Yemen's temporary capital during the aftermath of the 2014–15 Yemeni coup d'état

Hodeidah is the principal port of Yemen on the Red Sea

Socotra is an island in the Indian Ocean owned by Yemen. Home to some of the world’s most bizarre plants including the dragon’s blood tree

Kamaran Island is the largest Yemeni island in the Red Sea

States with limited recognition



State of Palestine is a de jure sovereign state. The State of Palestine claims the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and has designated Jerusalem as its capital, with partial control of those areas assumed in 1994 as the Palestinian Authority

Jericho is located 258 m below sea level in an oasis in Wadi Qelt in the Jordan Valley, which makes it the lowest city in the world

Allenby Bridge crosses the Jordan River near the city of Jericho, and connects the West Bank with Jordan. Known officially in Jordan as the King Hussein Bridge

Physical Geography


Transoxania is the ancient name used for the portion of Central Asia corresponding approximately with modern-day Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, southern Kyrgyzstan and southwest Kazakhstan. It is the region between the Amu Darya and Syr Darya rivers

Coromandel Coast is the southeastern coast of the Indian Subcontinent between Cape Comorin and False Divi Point. It may also include the southeastern coast of the island of Sri Lanka

Balochistan or Baluchistan is an arid region located in the Iranian Plateau in southwest Asia and south Asia, between Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan. The area is named after the numerous Baloch tribes, an Iranian people, who moved into the area from the west around AD 1000

Makran is a semi-desert coastal strip in the south of Balochistan, in Iran and Pakistan, along the coast of the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman

Fergana Valley is a depression in Central Asia, between the mountain systems of the Tien-Shan in the north and the Gissar-Alai in the south. It spreads across Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan

Malay Archipelago includes Indonesia, the Philippines, Brunei, East Malaysia and East Timor


Highest mountains in Asia – Everest, K2, Kangchenjunga, Lhotse, Makalu

Mount Everest is called Sagarmatha (Sanskrit for “Goddess of the Sky”) in Nepal. Known as Mount Qomolangma in China. Its peak is 8,848 m (29,029 ft) above sea level. Named after George Everest, the Surveyor General of India from 1830 to 1843. Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary made the first official ascent of Everest in 1953 using the southeast ridge route. Mount Everest was known as Peak XV

K2 (so called because it is the second peak to be mapped in the Karakoram segment of the Himalayan range) has an altitude of 8,611 m. First climbed in 1954 by two Italians – Lacedelli and Compagnoni. Currently K2 is under Pakistani administration. Also known as Savage Mountain and Mount Godwin-Austen

Kangchenjunga is the third highest mountain in the world with an altitude of 8,586 m. It is located on Nepal's eastern border with the state of Sikkim in India. First climbed in 1955 by George Band and Joe Brown. Means ‘The Five Treasures of Snows’

Pamir Mountains are a mountain range in Central Asia formed by the junction of the Himalayas with Tian Shan, Karakoram, Kunlun, and Hindu Kush ranges. They are among the world’s highest mountains, and are known as the “Roof of the World”

Altai Mountains are a mountain range in East-Central Asia, where Russia, China, Mongolia and Kazakhstan come together, and where the rivers Ob has its source

Tian Shan is a mountain range located in Central Asia. The range lies to the north and west of the Taklamakan Desert in the border region of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of western China. In the south it links up with the Pamir Mountains

Jengish Chokusu (means ‘Victory Peak’) is the highest point in the Tian Shan

Appapurna is a section of the Himalayas in north-central Nepal

Siachen glacier is located in the eastern Karakoram. The glacier's region is the highest battleground on Earth, where Pakistan and India have fought intermittently since 1984

Hindu Kush is an 800 km long mountain range that stretches between central Afghanistan and northern Pakistan

Tirich Mir is the highest point in the Hindu Kush, and the highest point outside the Himalayas-Karakorum range

Mount Kinabalu is a prominent mountain on the island of Borneo. It is the highest mountain in the Malay Archipelago

Zagros Mountains are the largest mountain range in Iran and Iraq. Mount Dena, the highest point in Zagros mountains, is in Iran

Khyber Pass is a mountain pass connecting Afghanistan and Pakistan, cutting through the northeastern part of the Spin Ghar mountains. An integral part of the ancient Silk Road, it is one of the oldest known passes in the world

Mount Paektu is the highest mountain in Korean peninsula. It is an active volcano on the border between North Korea and China

Klyuchevskaya Sopka is the highest mountain on the Kamchatka Peninsula and the highest active volcano of Eurasia

Kunlun Mountains form the northern boundary of the Tibetan plateau and extend for over 3000 km. Described as the location of the Shangri-La monastery in the novel ‘Lost Horizon’

The Karakoram Highway (KKH) is the highest paved international road in the world. It connects China and Pakistan across the Karakoram mountain range, through the Khunjerab Pass at an altitude of 4,693 m


The Kyzyl Kum also called Qyzylqum, is the 11th largest desert in the world. Its name means ‘red sand’ in both Uzbek and Kazakh. It is divided between Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and (partly) Turkmenistan

Rub' al Khali or Empty Quarter is one of the largest sand deserts in the world, encompassing most of the southern third of the Arabian Peninsula, including southern Saudi Arabia, and areas of Oman, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen

Thar Desert, also known as the Great Indian Desert, is a large, arid region in the northwestern part of the Indian subcontinent that forms a natural boundary between India and Pakistan

Karakum Desert is situated in Turkmenistan and Kazahkstan

Aral Karakum Desert is a desert in Kazakhstan, situated northeast of the Aral Sea

Aralkum Desert is a desert that has appeared since 1960 on the seabed once occupied by the Aral Sea


Longest rivers in Asia – Yangtze, Yellow (Huang He), Mekong, Lena, Irtysh

Brahmaputra River flows across Tibet to break through the Himalayas and into India. It flows through the Assam Valley and south through Bangladesh. In the Ganges Delta it merges with the Padma, then the Meghna, before emptying into the Bay of Bengal

The Mekong is the 10th longest river in the world, and the 10th largest by volume. From Tibet it runs through China's Yunnan province, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. All except China and Myanmar belong to the Mekong River Commission. Forms the border of Burma and Laos for about 100 km

Naga fireballs, also known as Mekong lights, is a phenomenon said to be often seen on the Mekong River. Glowing balls are alleged to naturally rise from the water high into the air

Panj River starts on the border between Afghanistan and Tajikistan in the ancient region of Badakhshan

The Yalu River (Chinese) or the Amnok River (Korean) forms part of the border between China and North Korea

Tumen River serves as part of the boundary between China, North Korea and Russia, rising on the slopes of Mount Paektu and flowing into the Sea of Japan

Amur River is the world's ninth longest river, forming the border between the Russian Far East and Northeastern China. Empties into Sea of Okhotsk

The Tigris is 1,850 km long, rising in the Taurus Mountains of eastern Turkey. The river then flows for 400 km through Turkish territory before becoming the border between Syria and Turkey. It then flows through Iraq. Baghdad stands on the banks of the Tigris

Originating in eastern Turkey, the Euphrates flows through Syria and Iraq to join the Tigris in the Shatt al-Arab, which empties into the Persian Gulf

Salween River flows from the Tibetan Plateau into the Andaman Sea. It drains a narrow and mountainous watershed that extends into China, Burma and Thailand

Amu Darya, also called the Amu or Amo River, and historically known by its Latin name Oxus, rises in the Pamir Mountains flows into the southern remnants of the Aral Sea

Syr Darya originates in the Tian Shan Mountains in Kyrgyzstan and eastern Uzbekistan and flows for 2,200 km to the northern remnants of the Aral Sea

70% of length of Indus River is in Pakistan

Ganges Delta is a river delta in the South Asia region of Bengal, consisting of Bangladesh and the state of West Bengal, India. It is the world's largest delta, and empties into the Bay of Bengal

The Sundarbans, claimed to be the largest single block of tidal halophytic mangrove forest in the world, lies at the mouth of the Ganges and is spread across areas of Bangladesh and West Bengal, India


Aral Sea is the largest lake in Central Asia. Lake Balkhash is the second largest

Since the 1960s the Aral Sea has been shrinking, as the rivers that feed it (the Amu Darya and the Syr Darya) were diverted by the then Soviet Union for irrigation. Aral Sea borders Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan

The Dead Sea is a salt lake between the West Bank and Israel to the west, and Jordan to the east, and is both the lowest point in Eurasia at 429 m below sea level, and the deepest hypersaline lake in the world at 304 m deep. It is also one of the saltiest bodies of water on Earth with a salinity of about 30%. Beginning in the 1960s water inflow to the Dead Sea from the Jordan River was reduced as a result of large-scale irrigation and generally low rainfall

Lisan Peninsula is a large spit of land that separates the North and the South basins of the Dead Sea

Lake Urmia is an endorheic salt lake in Iranian Azerbaijan, Iran and near Iran's border with Turkey. It has shrunk to 10% of its’ original size


Straits of Johor separates the Malaysian state of Johor on mainland Eurasia to the north from Singapore to the south

Banda Sea is in the Maluku Islands of Indonesia, connected to the Pacific Ocean but surrounded by hundreds of islands

Karimata Strait lies between Sumatra and Borneo

Strait of Malacca lies between Sumatra and Malaysia

Java Trench is the deepest point of the Indian Ocean

Java Sea lies between the Indonesian islands of Borneo to the north, Java to the south; Sumatra to the west, and Sulawesi to the east

Sulu Sea lies to the southwest of the Philippines

La Perouse Strait lies between Sakhalin and Hokkaido, and connects the Sea of Japan on the west with the Sea of Okhotsk on the east

Strait of Hormuz is a stretch of ocean between the Gulf of Oman in the southeast and the Persian Gulf in the southwest. On the north coast is Iran and on the south coast is the United Arab Emirates and Musandam, an exclave of Oman. The strait at its narrowest is 21 miles wide

The northern end of the Red Sea is bifurcated by the Sinai Peninsula, creating the Gulf of Suez in the west and the Gulf of Aqaba to the east. Gulf of Aqaba lies west of the Arabian mainland. Egypt, Israel, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia all have coastlines on the Gulf of Aqaba

Bab-el-Mandeb is a strait located between Yemen, and Djibouti and Eritrea. It connects the Red Sea to the Gulf of Aden

South Pars/North Dome field is a natural gas condensate field located in the Persian Gulf. It is the world's largest gas field, shared between Iran and Qatar

The Strait of Tartary connects the Sea of Okhotsk to the Sea of Japan

Gulf of Tonkin borders Vietnam and China. Red River empties into the Gulf of Tonkin

South China Sea encompasses an area from the Singapore and Malacca Straits to the Strait of Taiwan

Laccadive Sea is a body of water bordering India (including its Lakshadweep islands), the Maldives, and Sri Lanka. It is located to the west of Kerala

Gulf of Mannar is part of the Laccadive Sea

Solomon Sea lies between Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. Many major battles were fought there during World War II

Taiping Island is the largest of the naturally occurring Spratly Islands in the South China Sea. It is administered by the Republic of China

Liancourt Rocks are a group of small islets in the Sea of Japan (East Sea). Sovereignty over the islets is disputed between Japan and South Korea

Scarborough Shoal or Scarborough Reef, also known as Huangyan Island is a disputed territory in the South China Sea claimed by the People's Republic of China, Taiwan, and the Philippines

Southern Sakhalin, along with the Kuril Islands and Japan, were the indigenous lands of the Ainu peoples before they were displaced by force

The Kuril Islands in Russia's Sakhalin Oblast region, stretch approximately 1,300 km (700 miles) northeast from Hokkaido to Kamchatka separating the Sea of Okhotsk from the North Pacific Ocean. There are 56 islands in total. All of the islands are currently under the Russian jurisdiction. Japan claims the two southernmost large islands (Iturup and Kunashir) as part of its territory

Sebatik Island is an island off the eastern coast of Borneo, partly within Indonesia and partly within Malaysia